Over the past three weeks, the BYU defense has given up an average of 562.3 yards and 40.3 points per game during a three-game losing streak.
Following the latest setback — a humbling 41-14 loss at Liberty on Saturday — several former Cougar defenders shared their thoughts about the program’s struggles.
Among them was former BYU linebacker Kyle Van Noy, who now plays for the Los Angeles Chargers and was one of the top Cougar defenders from the Bronco Mendenhall era.
Van Noy called for change to a scheme that isn’t working — after Saturday, BYU ranks No. 103 nationally in total defense, No. 117 in rush defense and No. 128 (fourth-worst) in third-down conversion percentage defense.
I mean ain’t no way we can keep watching this and be like … you know what let’s keep this defensive strategy up…— Kyle Van Noy (@KVN_03) October 22, 2022
“I mean the offense has to play perfect and the defense just needs to play tougher and stop being soft,” Van Noy wrote on Twitter. “... Easy formula don’t see enough guys fly around.”
So it’s a joined group effort! I’m not here to bash scheme or players that’s not what I wanna do … I’m just saying in general that something has to change up when stuff isn’t working for a couple weeks. I’m not lookin for perfection let’s just get some fight!— Kyle Van Noy (@KVN_03) October 22, 2022
Van Noy wasn’t the only former BYU defender to share his thoughts on Twitter Saturday.
Others who shared their thoughts included safety Andrew Rich and defensive lineman Hans Olsen, now a sports radio personality.
Handing out career highs. Run blitz, pass blitz, bring 5, bring 6, bring a safety, a corner. For the love, please do something different.— Andrew Rich (@andrewrich22) October 22, 2022
Man to man can be effective but you can’t do it AND give the qb all day. Gotta make the qb uncomfortable.— Andrew Rich (@andrewrich22) October 22, 2022
Never seen a defense lose contain this frequently.— Hans Olsen (@975Hans) October 22, 2022
And that's just the beginning of BYU's issues.
So many problems.
Two other former Cougars who have brothers currently on the team also shared their view on the current state of the BYU team — safety Kai Nacua, the older brother of wide receiver Puka Nacua, and defensive lineman Trajan Pili, the older brother of linebacker Keenan Pili.
To give perspective and understanding on BYU’s defense…the entire scheme ,regardless of Tuiaki or Kalani calling plays, is based off of the Dline DOMINATING the game…if they don’t do that it doesn’t matter how good the back 7 is or what the play is…— Trajan Pili (@TRAYpili9) October 22, 2022
Trajan Pili, who played on BYU’s 4-9 team in 2017, tried to add some perspective to the Cougars’ current struggles, with the program joining the Big 12 next year.
I played for the 2017 team that went 4-9 and we were horrible…this 2022 team is playing bad but definitely not as bad as we were playing…don’t mix those seasons up because this team has 5x more talent than we did that year…still a chance for 8-4— Trajan Pili (@TRAYpili9) October 22, 2022
Without question…Coach Sitake is THE coach to lead BYU into the Big 12. There isn’t anyone better than him for the job. Good things will come of this slight bump in the road! ✊🏽— Trajan Pili (@TRAYpili9) October 23, 2022